Retro Modern Furniture
Sleek lines, innovative design, and a focus on stylish usability make Retro Modern furniture
styles true classics.
Inspired by the designs of the 1950s and 60s, Retro Modern furniture works beautifully in
today's home. Its clean, unfussy look is amazingly versatile, making it a perfect choice for a
chic urban apartment or a kid-friendly family room.
The Spirit of the Post War Years
The designs of the fifties were a reflection of the times. The post-war years were filled with
a sense of enthusiastic optimism about the future, breaking with the past and embracing all
things new. The overall aesthetic of the period was one of informality and simplicity, a
radical departure from the heavy, ornate formality and traditionalism of the pre-war period.
The Retro Modern furniture style reflects the best of the mid century era, creating a unique
combination of sophisticated style and sensible comfort.
Characteristics of Retro Modern Style
- Clean lines: The hallmark of this style is a sleek and streamlined look. The simple yet
polished lines create a sense of airiness and visual space that really epitomize the modern
- Minimum of embellishment: mid-century design is spare and uncluttered, with none of the
overstuffed cushions, carved trim, fringe, deeply draped fabrics and other elaborate
embellishments typical of traditional pre-war decor. The less-is-more sensibility of retro
modern emphasizes shapes and materials, highlighting design rather than decoration.
- Innovative use of materials: The designs of the fifties and sixties celebrated the new
materials and technologies that were transforming everyday life. Fiberglass, plastics, and
gleaming metal were shaped, molded, and sculpted into bold new forms impossible to
achieve with traditional materials and construction. Even the use of wood changed radically,
moving away from dark tones to lighter, more neutral shades. Retro modern furniture
accentuates the grain of woods like teak, showcasing their natural beauty.
- Curves and asymmetry: The juxtaposition of sharp angles and sensuous curves creates an
exciting dynamic in mid-century style, as does the use of asymmetrical shapes.
- Clear, bright colors: Non-traditional shades like aqua, pink, tangerine, turquoise, and
sunny yellow were extremely popular during the mid century period. Cheerful, high-energy
colors with black and/or white accents were used in everything from wallpaper to
upholstery, both as solids and combined in abstract prints.
- Usability-focused design: One of the factors that make mid-century designs enduring
classics is a focus on usability. The feel is smart and sophisticated without look-but-don't-
touch formality, and the clean, simple lines make both calming and friendly. Retro modern
furniture offers a combination of high performance and low maintenance that's ideal for
today's busy lifestyle.
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